menstruation

Your monthly “friend”

Menstruation
Just Plain Talk
Nourse
1980

All of the ladies probably remember that time in health class where the world of menstruation was explained. I remember that in 6th grade we had a boring film where girls in white pants told everyone how grown up they were. It was the white pants that made it realistic.

They always would play down symptoms such as debilitating cramps, bloating, mood swings, etc. and pass them off as “normal”. That’s just the life of a lady. Credit goes to this author who actually acknowledged that not everyone reacts the same way and that symptoms should be addressed by a doctor.

family grows

A new baby for the family

How a Family Grows
Shay
1968

This is a photo essay explaining reproduction to kids. This family is expecting a baby and there is a narrative of how this family explains the upcoming birth to the siblings. We featured another of Arthur Shay‘s books about nursing. That book also followed a similar format of following a particular bunch of students as they go through nursing school. They aren’t particularly bad, just outdated.

The first picture below almost had me do a double take. I thought this was some bizarre ice sculpture, and then read the caption about a field trip. I am assuming that the field trip was to a science museum and not some weird cocktail party.

coping with shyness cover

Don’t be Shy!

Coping With Shyness
Gelinas
1987

This title is bothersome. Shyness, according to the author, is a problem that needs treating. Throughout the book, there are discussions of paralyzing fear and how this is a severe “personality problem.” I think what the author is describing is severe anxiety. I am a little disturbed by the use of shyness as a catch-all term for descriptions of serious mental health issues.

Although this is a part of a series aimed at teens, the reading isn’t so teen friendly. I also think most teens would balk at this description. Lumping in more than several mental conditions into a term like shyness is a bad idea. I am not even sure it is a clinical term. I think most people define shyness as a reluctance to situations that involve a lot of new people or new situations.

paper office

Old School Office Management

The Paper Office
The Tools to Make Your Small Psychotherapy Practice Work
Zuckerman and Guyett
1991

This book is one of those oddly specific titles. It is basically a primer on the business side of setting up a psychotherapy office. They have sample intake forms, an outline of ethics/guidelines (most of it devoted to “don’t sleep with clients”), malpractice (again, this is usually because you shouldn’t sleep with clients), bill collecting (be sure to see the script for collecting unpaid fees), patient files, etc.

Meeting the challenge cover

Children with Diabetes

Meeting the Challenge: Children Living with Diabetes
Bergman
1992

Submitter: This book’s purpose is to show a normal kid living a normal life while managing diabetes, which is great, but managing diabetes looks a little different now than it did 30 years ago. This kid is still peeing on ketone strips to measure his blood sugar, which is pretty irrelevant in today’s world of nearly ubiquitous CGM (continual glucose monitoring—a sensor is attached to the body and provides real-time blood sugar readings via an app). Most kids today would also be using a pump rather than syringes, which are the only insulin delivery tool in the book, with the exception of one insulin pen.

The other odd thing about this book is the extended section devoted to a summer camp for kids with diabetes that the protagonist attends. The point is likely to show the kids doing all the kinds of things their friends can do, but it feels a little random and oddly specific to this one kid. Especially the counselor in face paint for some kind of activity, included in the pictures.

Holly: When a kid receives a diagnosis like diabetes and is learning to live with it, both they and their parents need current and helpful information. This offers neither of those things. Nice idea; past its prime.

vaccination and you

Vaccination and You

Vaccination and You
Cohen
1969

The info in this book is not that bad. It is geared to upper age elementary and it is pretty basic. It is simple enough that even some US governors, senators, and other leaders could grasp the concepts. With an update and more modern illustrations, this could work in 2021.

The photographs used were actually interesting. They also used a painting for the Louis Pasteur pages. Mrs Pasteur seems to be lurking in the hallway by his lab. Instead of a citation for the painting, there is a note that Mrs Pasteur is patiently waiting. (A quick search identified the artist as Robert Thom. This was from a group of paintings commissioned by Parke-Davis, later donated to the University of Michigan. You can see the collection uploaded here.)

Ouch! cover

Ouch!

Ouch! A Book About Cuts, Scratches, and Scrapes
Berger
1991

Submitter: The information in this book is fine, but it’s pretty visually dated and hasn’t been checked out in about 10 years. Mostly I’m chuckling over the extremely dramatic, unrealistic drawings of blood spurting from assorted wounds. Be sure to check out the images of the interior pages for that.

Holly: Not to mention the advanced vocabulary, like “fibrin” and “platelets.”

The Black Death cover

The Black Death

The Black Death
Day
1989

Submitter: Other than the cover (is that E.T. wielding the scythe of death? Why is he not wearing any clothes? Why is the dead man on the ground smiling?), this book is actually not that bad, just really old. Old enough to be concerned that “AIDS may soon become as damaging as the plague once was.” The pages are yellowed, the illustration style is pretty dated, and there are plenty of good newer books on the topic available. At 32 years old, this book has had a full life.

Holly: All the people in all the pictures in this book look like Zombies.